Monday, August 27, 2012

DIY: Replacing the Taillight Bulbs on a VW Beetle

I recently wrote that the turn signal bulb in my taillight had gone out.  I first noticed something was wrong when the clicking noise that I hear when I activate my turn signal started running double time.  Honestly, I had no idea what this meant at the time, but found it irritating enough to mention it to a family member who clued me in.

The absence of an obvious turn signal seemed like a safety issue, so I did what I do whenever my car has problems: I called the dealership.  The dealership quoted me more than $50 to replace the light bulb.  That didn't bother me (bulbs must be expensive, right?), but getting my car to the dealership during the available appointment times wasn't going to be possible due to the secondment.  So, I took to Google to see whether this was a project I might be able to do on my own.

I found the below helpful how-to video by A1 Auto:

This looked like something that I could manage, so I priced replacement light bulbs.  Just $5 for a pair!  That's all the encouragement I need to roll up my sleeves, grab a flashlight and a screwdriver, and do it myself.

I drive a 2005 VW Beetle Convertible, which has a plastic grate (instead of the plastic disc shown on the hard top model used in the video) that you need to pop out to access the thumb screw that bolts the taillight to the body of the car.  It took some serious effort to pop out my taillight, but swapping the bulbs out was otherwise as easy as A1 Auto made it look!

Thank you A1 Auto for saving me about $45 and the hassle of getting my car to the dealership!


just jenn said...

nice! i have an '04 hardtop, so i'll file this away for future information. i did try to replace the front bulb, but it turned out i needed an entire headlight assembly, so i ended up at the dealer.

CP said...

How handy are you!! $50 seems like highway robbery considering the bulb is only $5!

Metal said...

I need to learn a lesson from you...I paid $160 to unclog a bath tub. As if I called home a robber and asked him to rob me!

Paragon2Pieces said...

Thanks all! I was surprised by how accomplished this little task made me feel. I did a little victory dance... much to the amusement of the security guard who was apparently watching the whole thing via security camera.

@Metal $160 seems like a lot to unclog a tub, but it's not the most pleasant task (I speak from experience).